Maryland Shrimp Salad

This recipe for Maryland Shrimp Salad brings together juicy shrimp, seasoned to perfection with Old Bay. Plenty of fresh ingredients and bold flavors. This salad is perfect for a light lunch in the spring or summer.

A final presentation of the cold Maryland shrimp salad served on lettuce leaves, garnished with a lemon wedge on a patterned blue plate.

Cold Maryland Shrimp Salad

A refreshing and flavorful seafood salad, perfect for summer gatherings.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
chilling time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Serving Size 4 people


  • Large pot
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Colander


  • 1 pound medium shrimp peeled and deveined
  • tablespoons Old Bay seasoning divided
  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 stalk celery finely diced
  • ¼ cup red onion finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Lettuce leaves for serving
  • Lemon wedges for garnish


  • Cook Shrimp: In a large pot, bring 4 quarts of water and 1 tablespoon of Old Bay seasoning to a boil. Add the shrimp and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until they are pink and opaque. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.
    A close-up view of boiled shrimp being scooped out of a pot of hot water.
  • Chill Shrimp: Place the cooked shrimp in a bowl of ice water and chill until cold.
    A bowl of cooked, chilled shrimp on a marble countertop with lemon slices and fresh dill nearby.
  • Make Dressing: In a separate bowl, mix together mayonnaise, celery, red onion, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, dill, and the remaining ½ tablespoon of Old Bay seasoning. Stir until well combined.
    Ingredients for shrimp salad dressing in a mixing bowl, including mayonnaise, chopped red onion, dill, Old Bay seasoning, and seasoning.
  • Combine Shrimp and Dressing: Once the shrimp are chilled, add them to the dressing mixture. Gently toss to coat the shrimp evenly. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper as needed.
    A close-up of shrimp salad in a bowl, showing the creamy dressing coating the shrimp and specks of dill.
  • Serve: Serve the shrimp salad on a bed of lettuce leaves. Garnish with lemon wedges.
    A serving of cold Maryland shrimp salad on a bed of lettuce with lemon slices on a blue-rimmed plate.


You can adjust the amount of Old Bay seasoning based on your preference for spice level.
This salad can be made a day ahead and stored in the refrigerator.
For a lighter version, substitute half of the mayonnaise with Greek yogurt.
Calories: 491kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 25g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 206mg | Sodium: 506mg | Potassium: 351mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 129IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 111mg | Iron: 2mg

I hope you love this simple salad, whether it’s for company or just for you.

A serving of cold Maryland shrimp salad on a bed of lettuce with lemon slices on a blue-rimmed plate.

🥣 important tools and ingredients

  • Old Bay Seasoning. A staple in seafood dishes, especially in Maryland cuisine, Old Bay adds a unique blend of spices and heat. You can find it in the spice aisle of most grocery stores. If it’s unavailable, a mix of celery salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper can be a good substitute.
  • Medium Shrimp. The star of the dish, medium shrimp provide the perfect bite-size for salads. You can usually find them at the seafood counter or in the frozen section of grocery stores. For a vegetarian twist, chickpeas can be a surprising yet tasty substitute.
  • Fresh Dill. This herb adds a fresh, tangy flavor to the salad. Look for it in the fresh produce section, often near other fresh herbs. If you cannot find fresh dill, you can use dried dill, but the fresh variety offers a more vibrant taste.
  • Lemon Juice. Fresh lemon juice is essential for this recipe’s bright, citrusy flavor. It’s usually found in the produce section. In a pinch, bottled lemon juice can work, but fresh juice offers a superior taste.
  • Dijon Mustard. This adds a tangy depth to the dressing. The condiments aisle houses Dijon mustard. It is a key ingredient for its distinct flavor. Honey mustard could be an alternative for a sweeter profile.

With these key ingredients, you’re well on your way to creating a Cold Maryland Shrimp Salad. It will be both flavorful and refreshing

A bowl of raw peeled shrimp next to a measuring cup of mayonnaise, a bowl of Old Bay seasoning, a red onion, lemon slices, and a sprig of dill on a marble surface.

  • Large Pot. A large pot is essential for boiling the shrimp. It ensures there’s enough space for the shrimp to cook without overcrowding.
  • Mixing Bowls. Mixing bowls are essential for preparing the dressing. Use them to combine it with the shrimp. They ensure all ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Colander. This tool is vital for draining the shrimp after boiling. It stops the cooking process immediately and cools them .
  • Refrigerator. A refrigerator is essential for achieving the right texture and taste. It’s critical for chilling the shrimp and allowing the flavors of the salad to meld together.

Now that we’ve covered the essential equipment, let’s move on to some helpful tips. They will make your salad preparation smoother and more enjoyable.

✨ Tips for the best shrimp salad

  • Shrimp Selection and Prep. Opt for fresh, wild-caught shrimp if available. They often have a better flavor and texture than farmed. Ensure they’re deveined for a more pleasant eating experience.
  • Balancing Flavors: While Old Bay seasoning is flavorful, it can be quite salty. Consider the salt content of your Old Bay. Adjust more salt in the recipe to avoid a salty salad.
  • Dressing Consistency. If you prefer a lighter dressing, mix the mayonnaise with Greek yogurt or sour cream. This not only cuts down on calories but also adds a tangy flavor which complements the shrimp.
  • Chilling Time: Don’t rush the chilling process. Allow the shrimp to chill and the salad to rest in the refrigerator. This lets the flavors meld together and intensifies the taste.
  • Serving Suggestions. For an elegant presentation, serve the shrimp salad in avocado halves or with a side of artisan bread. These options can add a gourmet touch to your dish.
  • Freshness Check: Always do a sniff test on your shrimp before cooking. Fresh shrimp should have a mild scent, not fishy, to ensure the best taste and food safety.
  • Herb Variations: Don’t hesitate to experiment with herbs. You can use dill. Experimenting with parsley, chives, or a bit of tarragon can add a new dimension to the salad.
  • Garnish . A sprinkle of paprika or a few capers can add color and a burst of flavor right before serving. This enhances the visual appeal and taste.

🥫 Storage and make ahead instructions

Refrigerator Storage: Store the shrimp salad in an airtight container. You should keep it in the refrigerator and consume it within 1-2 days. The freshness of the ingredients, especially the shrimp, diminishes beyond this point. The flavors may start to change.

Avoiding Sogginess. If you expect leftovers, consider storing the dressing . Keep it separate from the shrimp and vegetables. This way, you can combine them before serving. It keeps the salad fresh and prevents it from becoming soggy.

Freezing Instructions: It’s not recommended to freeze this shrimp salad. The mayonnaise-based dressing, celery, and red onion do not freeze well. This often results in a change in texture and flavor upon thawing.

Reviving Leftovers. If the salad has been in the fridge and you find it a bit dry, stir in a small amount of fresh mayonnaise or lemon juice. This will bring back some moisture and zing.

Can I use frozen shrimp for this recipe?

Absolutely! Frozen shrimp can be a convenient and cost-effective option. Make sure to thaw them in the refrigerator or under cold water before cooking.

Is there a vegetarian alternative to shrimp in this salad?

For a vegetarian version, you can substitute shrimp with grilled tofu or chickpeas. These alternatives provide a similar texture. They are excellent at absorbing the flavors of the dressing.

How can I determine if I have cooked the shrimp?

Shrimp cooks and turns a pinkish color with a slight opacity when done. If you overcook them, they’ll become rubbery. Watch for the color change and remove them from the heat right away.

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare this salad up to a day in advance. The flavors develop more when left to sit in the fridge. This makes it a great make-ahead dish for gatherings.

What are some side dishes that pair well with this shrimp salad?

This salad pairs well with light sides like a fresh green salad, cucumber salad, or even a fruit salad. For a heartier meal, serve it alongside grilled vegetables or a quinoa salad.

❤️ More cold summer salads you’ll love

There’s nothing like a good cold salad you can mix up in the morning and enjoy later in the day. All the hard work is done.

Our Cold Maryland Shrimp Salad is more than a recipe. It’s a celebration of fresh, simple ingredients. They come together to create a dish that’s both satisfying and light.

and add a horizontal hero. GOOD JOB!!!!

Maryland Shrimp Salad

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